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Ganglion (Lymphadenopathy) : Definition, Recognize, Diagnosis, Tests, Infection, Viral, Cancer and Treatment

Tuesday, September 25th 2012. | General

Ganglion Definition

A ganglion, a small gland involved in immune defenses become palpable means that it is bloated and is referred to as lymphadenopathy.

It is conventional to say that the node has a size of less than 1 cm, whereas lymphadenopathy has a size of at least 2 cm.

The presence of a palpable lymph node indicates the presence of infection reported in the vicinity, or more rarely, a specific condition that he will have to find the cause.

When accidentally discovered this anomaly led to a search node origin: check that it is a node, it is one and if there are several, to see if they are located in one area or spread to different parts of the body are the first points to validate.


How to recognize?

A ganglion is usually small, not visible under the skin and discovered by palpation

The ganglion, or lymphadenopathy is usually discovered accidentally by palpation. It rarely causes, due to too large a volume, signs of compression of any organ, or simply that it is visible.

Palpation performed by your doctor will be meticulous and precise exploring successively:

  • The supraclavicular fossa, that is to say, just above the clavicle;
  • The armpit or axilla;
  • The inguinal (groin);
  • Cervical region: median, seeking to eliminate what is not a ganglion and, in particular, thyroid, or thyroid nodule, but also lateral and posterior.

General signs and infectious context in the days preceding is important to know: acute or subacute with high fever, sweating, impaired general condition, but also contacts with animals, travel, or injury are elements which allow for guide the diagnotic and find the cause of lymphadenopathy.

Finally local signs such as skin lesions, arthralgia or the existence of a large spleen can also guide the diagnosis.

Ganglion Diagnosis

This is the palpation that is central to the examination of a lymph node.

The palpable lymph node has different characteristics depending on its origin:

- Its size should be measured precisely because it is a way of knowing how it evolves, a ganglion isolated small, less than 2 cm, unsigned accompanist is usually not disturbing;

- Consistency, elastic or hard;

- Its mobility relative to surrounding tissues;

- Sensitivity: painful on palpation indicating an infectious process or painless;

- The state of the skin over which can be sensitive and red reflecting inflammation;

- And of course its precise location:

  • Lymph node located above the clavicle isolated, painless, significant size and located in the hollow above the clavicle, one area of concern, often indicate the practice of biopsy;
  • A lymph largest located in the side region of the neck and below the jaws, or a group of nodes in the same area are usually translate a phenomenon infectious.

Ganglion Test

From a first approach via clinical palpation to better appreciate the ganglion and the context in which it occurs will be offered some additional tests,

  • Biological: a detailed examination of the components of blood and inflammatory balance. Based on the results of the examinations and if necessary more complete as a liver, immunological unbilan oriented signs specific to the exam will be offered.
  • Radiation: an ultrasound or a CT scan may indicate the presence of lymph nodes deeper accompanying superficial.
  • The realization of a needle biopsy (lymph node puncture and histology) to identify infectious origin or a biopsy to have an accurate diagnosis, pathological anatomy said, if cancer or diseases of the immune system defends the body.

Ganglion Infection

A ganglion changing should above all be mistaken for an infection. But it can also be more severe infections.

The original source of a transformation of a node is the infection and inflammation that accompanies it. The focus of infection that is causing can find at:

  • Nasopharynx, sinuses, ears or teeth nodes located in different regions of the neck;
  • Genital or lower limbs, for lymph nodes in the hollow of the groin (inguinal region);
  • Hands to lymph nodes in the armpit (axilla);
  • In any region for local infectious problems involving the skin.

Other infectious causes often more serious can be identified:

  • They can cause lymphadenopathy or even poly-lymphadenopathy, that is to say, nodes in different regions of the body
  • HIV-AIDS, it is a sign of primary infection or a witness to the presence of general symptoms in a later phase of the evolution of the disease;
  • Tuberculosis, especially among children from Africa
  • Bacterial infections , where it is often possible to speak of lymphadenitis, which means that the node is infected and large

Ganglion Viral

In the case of viral diseases, the context is often evocative.

Many viral diseases are manifested by lymph apparion:

  • Toxoplasmosis gives several nodes rather located in the neck region, unilaterally, elastic consistency and arising out of an episode of fever with rash and fatigue;
  • Infectious mononucleosis, kissing disease called extended with multiple nodes in a severe infection and impaired general condition. A biological test will confirm the diagnosis, but a combination of fatigue and many ganaglions is very evocative.
  • The cat scratch disease which often gives a ganglion located in the neck when it was scratched in the region of visage.La scratch often goes unnoticed in someone who has the habit of living with a cat.

Ganglion Cancer

Some cancers can give nodes but the discovery of a ganglion is not systematically discuss cancer.

Among the major cancers may give one or more nodes:

- Leukemia, whether acute among young people, and chronic lymphoid people aged over 50 years;

Hodgkin’s disease with lymph often unilateral supraclavicular and thoracic (in the mediastinum);

- Lymphoma with lymph usually large;

- Digestive cancers with lymph node located at the left supraclavicular fossa.

General diseases, called systemic collagenosis (systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis) or diseases such as sarcoidosis can give nodes. Recent causes remain outstanding, the ganglion is usually witnessed a trivial infection.

Ganglion Treatment

Treatment is usually one of the cause, no treatment is the rule.

Lymph nodes usually disappear alone especially when they are witnesses of local infectious problems. This is especially true for children. The treatment is that of the cause. The removal of a node is done only in the context of investigation for better diagnosis difficult and uncertain about its origin.

Some say lymphadenitis lymphadenopathy are infections whose door is either:

  • Skin, the germ is usually a staph;
  • Pharyngeal, and it is a Streptococcus pneumoniae ;
  • Dental

These nodes should receive appropriate antibiotic treatment or a surgical drainage in cases of cellulitis.

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